Men's Fashion & Lifestyle Blog

Traveling the world is my absolute favorite thing to do. I consider myself lucky to have had the opportunity to visit many incredible places and learn about different cultures & people. Unfortunately, I have not been able to travel as frequently since my arrival in the United States 5 years ago. It was therefore a true gift to embark on an epic trip to Mexico last August.

The trip to Mexico was booked on a whim when I came across a promotion on the Flight Deal that could not be shunned. Being the coupon-mom that I am, I also found an amazing deal for a 5-star all-inclusive resort. The deal, however, turned out to be too good to be true. The resort decided to cancel our reservation a week before departure when I refused to send a copy of my credit card & passport. After 40 hours (yes, really) on the phone with, we were finally relocated to the Valentin Imperial Maya Resort in Playa del Secreto.

On August 14th, Chris and I arrived in Mexico and were blown away by the imposing Valentin Imperial Maya Resort. At check-in, we decided to upgrade our room to a Platinum Room featuring a jacuzzi and beach access. It was our first vacation in years, so why not enjoy it to the fullest, right?

The resort turned out to be even more stunning than the photos had suggested. The buildings, horticulture, beach paths, lobby: every little detail had been perfectly thought of. With its lush palm trees, luxurious cabanas, and multiple swim-up bars, the pool area was particularly heavenly.

Steven Willem Mexico Pool - State Of Silver
Steven Willem Sunglasses - State Of Silver
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As it was my first time visiting an All-Inclusive resort, I had been a little anxious about the food prior to arrival. Luckily, the food was absolutely incredible. The restaurant that served breakfast/lunch was situated on the beach offering stunning views. The buffet featured a plethora of food, and I was happy to find plenty of vegetarian options. The restaurants serving dinner were also great, in particular the the Italian, Japanese, and Indonesian restaurants. One word of advice to the guys: no matter how nice you look, the restaurants will not seat you unless you are wearing a button-up shirt with collar. During my first night, I experienced morbidly obese gentlemen getting seated while I, wearing a highly edgy outfit, was turned away and asked to change. I guess there is a first for everything….

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Valentin Imperial Maya Beach

As much as I loved my time at the resort, I always stress the importance of getting out and  exploring the country itself to get a sense of what life is like. While we were strongly advised against it, Chris and I took a local bus to visit Playa Del Carmen. After waiting for 30 minutes on a highway, a sketchy-looking minivan picked us up. Comfortable it was not, but it was refreshing to speak with some locals. Our experience in the minivan turned out to be more exciting than Playa Del Carmen itself, but I am glad we got to see it.

Other than our trip to Playa Del Carmen, Chris and I also visited Tulum, two centotes and the Mexican jungle. Tulum was interesting, although I could have done without the millions of tourists that photo-bombed nearly all pictures. Exploring the Mexican jungle by ATV was my favorite excursion. We had lied about having driven an ATV before, as we were otherwise not allowed to participate. I thought: how difficult can it possibly be? Well, very. I am still astounded how this vehicle could deal with all the rocks on the ground, but I guess that’s why it’s called an All Terrain Vehicle (I had to Google that). I know this will disappoint my European family & friends, but I am unable to drive a stick and do not understand the concept of “clutch.” Chris and I fell off and broke the ATV when we failed to change gears climbing a steep mountain. Scary, but fun nevertheless.

In the jungle, we visited two gorgeous centotes. The first cenote was open to the public and therefore jam packed with people, but the second was only open to our small group. Snorkeling through the cenotes was amazing and introduced us to many exotic fish and incredible stalagmites. Definitely an unforgettable experience!

All in all, our vacation was pure perfection. I kept trying to find fault with the resort, but simply couldn’t. I am so, so thankful for this amazing experience and will cherish it forever. Check below for the pictures!

– Steven

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State of Silver - Mexico Pool
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Valentin Imperial Maya Beach
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State Of Silver - Beach Bar
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